About the SAP

The Cambria Green Specific Area Plan and Masterplan is one of the largest planning scheme amendments and tourism developments ever proposed for the East Coast of Tasmania.

The Cambria Green zoning amendments and development have the potential to change forever the social, cultural and environmental characteristics of the entire East Coast, not just Swansea, Dolphin Sands and Cambria.

The East Coast Alliance is committed to protecting the values that make Tasmania such a special place to live and visit.

The extent of the Cambria Green amendment proposal and its proximity to Swansea, Cambria and Dolphin Sands. Commissioned by Sophie Underwood.


If approved by the Tasmanian Planning Commission, and provided the developers work within the new SAP rezoning, the Glamorgan Spring Bay Council will have LIMITED RIGHT OF REFUSAL to any development application (DA). Remember – the Masterplan Concept currently grabbing all the headlines is just that – a concept. No DA has been submitted. The developers have NO obligation to implement the concept Masterplan.

What’s happened so far?

  • The Cambria Estate Draft Amendment AM 2018-03 (Specific Area Plan and other amendments) was initiated by Glamorgan Spring Bay Council (GSBC) on 24 April 2018.

  • At this meeting, the Council could have voted “NO” to the proposed Draft Amendment. Click here for a useful diagram outlining the approval process for amendment of planning schemes (Part 3, Land Use Planning and Approvals Act 1993).

  • Submissions to Council closed on 14 June. A total of 623 submissions were received by Glamorgan Spring Bay Council, around 98% of these were AGAINST the Cambria Draft Amendment, and many of these were detailed, informed representations from individuals and significant state and national organisations.

  • The GSBC planning department processed and evaluated all submissions to prepare a Section 39 Report. Council was granted two extensions to complete the Report (to 30 November 2018).

  • The Section 39 Report was presented to Councillors at the 27 November 2018 meeting for consideration and voting. The Draft Amendment was approved 4 to 3. Watch a live recording of the meeting here (Cambria starts at 44 minutes).

  • The Section 39 Report and all submissions were forwarded to the Tasmanian Planning Commission (TPC) and are available for public viewing on the Tasmanian Planning Commission website.

  • The final decision on the Cambria Draft Amendment is the responsibility of the Tasmanian Planning Commission, not the Glamorgan Spring Bay Council.


  • A public Directions Hearing was held by the Tasmanian Planning Commission (TPC) on Friday 14 December at the Swansea Town Hall to assess the key issues, set process and determine what needs to be done for the final hearing. The panel of three Commissioners acknowledged the significant number of concerns and issues about the Cambria Draft Amendment raised by representors in their submissions and identified the following as relevant for their consideration and assessment:

    • agricultural land rezoning

    • conflicts with the State Coastal Policy (for example, the proposed golf course)

    • conflicts with the Southern Tasmanian Regional Land Use Strategy through a new settlement and activity centres outside Swansea

    • inadequately addressed heritage conservation plan for the historic Cambria homestead, garden and surrounding landscape

    • environmental concerns

    • roads and transport (lack of detail and the use of traffic data dating from 2012 prevented State Roads from providing an adequate response)

    • water and irrigation

    • lack of clarity re potential for subdivision and residential development

  • Other issues raised and acknowledged as legitimate concerns by the Commission included ground water; the airstrip; jurisdiction around the property purchase and company documents. The potential social and economic impacts of the proposed development were cited as a key concern.

    The Commission panel noted the current lack of detail from the proponents meant many concerns relating directly to the potential development could not be adequately assessed.

  • The Commission panel gave the Cambria Green applicants (proponents) until 1 February 2019 to to file a response to the Glamorgan Spring Bay Council’s Section 39 Report, the 600-plus submissions received by Council, and to provide other proof of evidence and expert reports on a range of issues of concern to the TPC.

next steps

  • Following ongoing requests from the proponents for extensions over a number of months (granted), the TPC panel directed the proponents to provide missing jurisdictional information relating to titles and landowner consents by Friday 29 March. The Commission Panel stated it initially intended to assess ONLY these and any other jurisdictional issues.

  • Since 29 March and following ongoing communication between the TPC, the proponents and individuals concerned about the legality of the Cambria rezoning application, a public hearing on jurisdictional issues only was held on Friday 30 August 2019 in Hobart. Read here the relevant correspondence from the TPC Panel.

jurisdictional HEARING

  • At the jurisdictional hearing on 30 August, the proponent’s lawyer Shaun McElwaine SC presented Cambria Green representative Mr Ronald Hu as his sole witness.

  • A number of individuals and the Tasmanian Greens cross-examined Mr Hu. The Environmental Defenders Office and ERA Planning attended the hearing on behalf of the East Coast Alliance.

  • Click here for media coverage.

  • The TPC panel gave the proponents to Friday 6 September to file a response, all other parties then had to Friday 13 September to present closing submissions, and the proponents now have until Friday 20 September to file a closing submission on jurisdictional issues.

  • The Environmental Defenders Office provided a closing response on behalf of the ECA - click here to read the East Coast Alliance submission.

  • All other submissions can be found on the Tasmania Planning Commission website - read below the process for accessing all submissions.

What’s the latest news?

  • The Tasmanian Planning Commission is yet to make a decision on these jurisdictional issues. This should take place following the receipt of all closing submissions by COB Friday 20 September.

  • Should the TPC accept the landowner consents as legal, a deadline will then be set for the East Coast Alliance planners and all other interested parties (including all those who have previously made a representation) to respond to all other matters relating to the Cambria Draft Amendment.

  • The East Coast Alliance will communicate the jurisdictional decision and future deadline dates as soon as we receive confirmation from the Tasmanian Planning Commission.

  • Note: to follow the process and access all relevant documents relating to the Cambria Estate Draft Amendment AM 2018-03 on the TPC’s Iplan website, click here. When all the original documents and submissions are downloaded (you may need to be patient), click on the Hearings tab to take you to the most recent TPC correspondence and further submissions, including all submissions relating to jurisdictional issues.

About the ECA

The East Coast Alliance was formed by a small group of community volunteers concerned about the potential impacts of the Cambria Green Specific Area Plan and Masterplan.  The ECA is not opposed to, and supports, appropriate, reasonable and sustainable development.

The East Coast Alliance Executive Committee members are Anne Held (President), Steve Barrett (Vice President), Jennie Churchill (Secretary/Public Officer), Marjorie Howard (Treasurer), Mitty Williams (Committee Member), Maureen Stevenson (Committee Member).


We welcome and value strong partnerships. The ECA is already working with other statewide groups and organisations focused on protecting the unique characteristics of East Coast Tasmanian communities. Please contact us at ecatassie@gmail.com should you or your organisation wish to become involved.